Thyroid cancer is diagnosed by a biopsy in which the type of cancer is also determined. The pathologist can differentiate between the varying appearances of the cancer cells found under the microscope, and know the type of cancer.
The types of thyroid cancer are:
[Read: Thyroid Cancer Warning Signs]
A very rare condition of thyroid cancer also occurs, called the Non Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) of the thyroid. This is a very rare condition. Although among all the cancers, that of thyroid is a relatively uncommon one, it does require you to take lifelong treatment. With lifelong monitoring, one can survive the disease too. This becomes evident with the fact that in 95 per cent of the cases of thyroid cancer, the patients are able to survive for a long-term.
The elderly should be particularly wary of anaplastic as it is the most serious form of cancer. It can easily spread to the lymph nodes and you get a lump in the neck, for which you will need to visit a doctor. It is also dangerous with regards to its inclination to spread to other body parts. The low incidence of this cancer type is due to the fact that it affects mostly the old people. That is the main reason behind the very low long-term survival rate compared to other forms of thyroid cancer.
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